Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Review: CRISTINA by Jake Parent

Driven by a desperate need to escape her past, Cristina Rodriguez moves into a picturesque hilltop home with an ocean view. The same place where, four years earlier, a young girl was kidnapped and murdered. 

At first, both the house and the scenic California beach town seem perfect. Fresh air. Fresh faces. And the ocean is just ten minutes away. But as Cristina and her daughter set about rebuilding their lives, they soon discover that the past is not about to let go so easily. 

A gripping psychological suspense mystery by a #1 Amazon bestselling author, Cristina will grab you from the first page and keep you guessing until the very end.

Reviewed by: Sandra
Rating: 4 stars

Review: “It had been four years since the little girl’s body was found, mutilated and buried in a quarry near her home in Pleasure Point, California. The same home Cristina Rodriguez now wanted to buy.” (7)

I don’t know if I’d be willing to live in a house were a lot of deaths took place. But, then again, people die everywhere.

Having led a poor life, battling drugs and low-life scumbags, and escaping an abusive relationship, Cristina is a character that is both rough around the edges and nurturing at the same time. She’s a tattooed recovering addict with a young daughter and only wants to make a life for herself in a new home.  She is a feisty Latina! The best thing about her was that she comes from a long line of tough Mexicans, which made her as resilient as they come. Like her abuela always said: “quit crying and do what you need to do, because the only two choices you have in life are to fight or to give up.” Yes, Cristina’s past isn’t pretty and she’s had her problems, but her trying to make up for it and wipe the slate clean makes her an endearing character, especially when it came to her daughter. Her story is written with a raw, richly urban, and destitute Hispanic voice. Being Hispanic myself, I definitely related to this aspect.

“Cristina had always been a magnet for the eccentric people of the world.”  (81) And you can’t get any more eccentric than ghosts!

The story started off slow, at first, but it becomes easier and more interesting once you get into it. It was well-written with a cast of well-defined and relatable characters. I must admit that some of the characters are pretty kooky and just plain weird. Of course, once the ghostly brick-a-bracs started happening, that’s when it started getting better. A troubled history, a strange disappearance, and the wandering spirits that linger in that house—that mixed with Cristina’s bold, snarky attitude and her fight to survive made for a compelling read.

Readers will root for Cristina as she learns to face her fears, fight for her daughter, bury the past, and tries to put the demons to rest.

A great read!

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